NYC Health Aide Guilty Of Stealing $800,000 From Elderly Woman

There are few stories more heart-wrenching than those in which workers take advantage of vulnerable senior citizens. But the case involving 86-year-old Renee Fuld is particularly egregious because the New York City woman also is disabled.

Fuld's aide, Jackie Pokuwaah, 52, was arrested last year for allegedly stealing more than $800,000 from Fuld (pictured at left), who uses a wheelchair to get around. Pokuwaah apparently convinced her patient to write more than 400 checks, payable to the aide, for items such as ice cream, laundry and wallpaper, and then pocketed the cash, the New York Post reports.

On Tuesday, jurors in a Queens courtroom found Pokuwaah guilty of several charges in the check-writing scheme, including grand larceny and criminal possession. She now faces more than 15 years in prison when sentenced later this month.

The Bronx resident was aided in her deception by Fuld's various ailments which, the Post notes, doctors and social workers have found to include a "mathematical disorder" that prevents her from understanding the value of money.

That incapacity allegedly permitted Pokuwaah to ask Fuld for a $1,700 check to buy diabetic ice cream and $700 checks for laundry. According to testimony Fuld gave during the weeklong trial, Pokuwaah also asked for nearly $6,000 for carpeting; $5,000 for vitamins; and $6,000 for wallpaper, which "I never received."

Fuld also said that the full-time aide paid herself double the $1,561 salary that she earned each week.

Pokuwaah also moved -- along with her two children -- into the elderly victim's Queens home where they lived rent-free.

The scheme was discovered by a bank employee who noticed suspicious memos on the checks Pokuwaah deposited twice a week and alerted investigators, according to the Post.

Pokuwaah's attorney declined comment after the guilty verdict, but he reportedly said during closing arguments that Fuld wasn't victimized, since she's now well enough to write and balance her own checkbook.

Nursing Home Workers Get Jail Time For Patient Prank

Don't Miss: Companies Hiring Now

More From AOL Jobs

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum


Filter by:


May 29 2012 at 2:16 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

my mother in law was 98 and i found that her caregiver of 20 years had stole money from her, using her credit card for $400.00 worth of dog food for her show dogs and many other offenses including signing her checks and altering checks. i caught her and the bank would only go back 18 months in aiding me in finding how much she really took. i am happy to say she was found guilty at trial took a plea and is now considered a felon. i wanted her to not be allowed to work for vulnerable persons ever again but the judge would not add that. i can only hope that she will never be able to find a job working with the elderly.

May 04 2012 at 5:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Terry and Mandy

How could the victim now be "well enough to write and balance her own checkbook"? Did she suddently get 20 years younger? One can only hope for karma when the aide gets old and needs help from a caregiver..

May 04 2012 at 2:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Too bad hospital staff can't be held liable for theft on an elderly patient!! An aide in San Diego caused my mother's death nearly 16 years (at age 79) ago by stealing her wedding ring off of her finger while applying lotion to her hands. It upset my mother (who had heart surgery three days before) so badly, her heart began fibrilating, she had a stroke, and died three weeks later. She was determined brain dead two days after the stroke. The aide was the only one missing from the hospital, gone home "sick", and then on a "vacation" to Vegas. I know what I wanted to have happen to her, but that is only for God to determine. Thank God for people like that bank employee who have the courage to step forward. Fifteen years is not nearly enough to pay for what she did. We can only hope that Karma will step in for her, and the woman in San Diego - and it will.

May 04 2012 at 2:41 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Get her picture out there and name and put it up on a bill board if u have to. My mother had things talen, clothes, etc, what they even took was her underware. When my father was alive they were to make lunch and clean the house, all that (lady) was watch tv. If you call all they do is send another looser.

May 04 2012 at 2:26 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Gary Miller

scum bag

May 03 2012 at 9:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

dumb broad

May 03 2012 at 8:07 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

I seen a picture of this crook as she has a striking resemblance to Obama's aunt.
US President Barack Obama's aunt, who has lived illegally in America for nearly 10 years, says the US is obligated to grant her citizenship.

Zeituni Onyango, half sister of Obama's father,

"If I come as an immigrant, you have the obligation to make me a citizen," Onyango said
She stayed in a homeless shelter in the city for two years and was later assigned public housing, "all along living illegally and violating the law.

Describing her relationship with Obama as close.

May 03 2012 at 8:06 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to ragtopdaz's comment

yOu are clearly ignorant tying this story to President Obama. You teabaggers and racist are clearly grasping at straws to discredit my President. Just vote and see him take his oath in January. Dufus.

May 04 2012 at 2:21 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

No worries people, the NAACP will come to her defense..

May 03 2012 at 7:59 PM Report abuse +3 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to ragtopdaz's comment


May 04 2012 at 2:21 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

A woman who was in the U.S. illegally when she allegedly ran over and killed a disabled man in Massachusetts last year could be deported to her native Guatemala without standing trial here.

Scott Coxall, 39, was killed after he was hit by a car driven by Bianca Contreras while crossing the street in downtown Waltham around 6 p.m. Nov. 23, 2011, according to police. Contreras, who police say fled the scene, was slated to stand trial when a federal immigration judge sitting in Boston ruled Tuesday that she should be deported. Federal officials now intend to release Contreras from custody without trying her for motor vehicle homicide, which the victim's father called outrageous.

“I want [the judge] to explain to me how he can let someone that’s facing criminal charges just go home," Thomas Coxall told the Boston Herald. "I’d like to see her stand trial.”

Authorities claim that Contreras was traveling double the speed limit when she struck Coxall.

May 03 2012 at 7:57 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Search Articles

Picks From the Web